Business Insider: New York comp reforms part of business-climate proposals

Originally published by Business Insider, Stephanie Goldberg
June 6, 2016

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A council created to review New York's business climate has proposed ways to decrease the cost of doing business in the state without compromising protections for workers.

The Business Regulation Council on Friday submitted 26 recommendations to Gov. Andrew Cuomo, state Senate Majority Leader John Flanagan and state Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie, according to a statement by the governor's office.

Focusing on issues like unemployment insurance, workers compensation, temporary disability insurance, energy, taxes and other business-related costs, the council said in a report that “the recommendations are designed to reduce costs and administrative hurdles” and give “businesses greater flexibility in how they operate.”

Recommendations included in the council's report that could be accomplished in the near future involve repealing rules by the New York State Department of Motor Vehicles that relate to “commercial truck inspections, enforcements and penalty provisions in order to provide relief to employers for minor violations” and evaluating “the weekly pay mandate in labor law as it relates to employers with less than 1,000 state employees.”

The council's proposed long-term recommendations include investigating legislative solutions to address “on-call shifts” and “predictive scheduling,” as well as expanding the use of Career and Technical Education certifications for workers.

The report also states possible solutions that require further discussion, such as creating a state insurance advisory board and implementing workers comp reforms to improve “municipal employer and county plan member access to public self-insured pools, and finaliz(e) durational caps on permanent partial disabilities.”

The seven-member Business Regulation Council includes Mario Cilento, president of the New York State AFL-CIO; Ted Potrikus, president and CEO of the Retail Council of New York State; Kathryn Wylde, president and CEO of the Partnership for New York City; Heather Briccetti, president and CEO of the Business Council of New York State Inc.; Dean Norton, president of the New York Farm Bureau; Gary LaBarbera, president of the Building and Construction Trades Council of Greater New York; and Robert Grey, chair of the New York Workers Compensation Alliance.